I’ll confess: I love Allie Phillips. Not only is she one of the kindest, politest people I’ve ever worked with, but she dedicates a chunk of her time to protecting animals: a very noble cause. So I was beyond thrilled when I noticed that, in a recent month, Allie got over 1,100 visitors to her site, AlliePhillips.com.
So what is she doing to get so much publicity for her books and her cause? Here’s what she had to say…
Who built your website? How was the experience?
Smart Authors built my book website and the experience was so seamless and wonderful that I had them build my coaching/healing website too (ManifestedHarmony.com)! They have always been available for follow up questions and tweaking both sites. The customer service has been fantastic!
Which social networking sites do you regularly participate in? Facebook? Twitter? GoodReads? LinkedIn? Any others?
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. But I spend most of my time on Facebook because that seems far more interactive.
How many online followers do you have?
LinkedIn = 326
Pinterest (new) = 26
Facebook = 1735
Twitter = 110
Facebook = 638
Twitter = 115
How has your online presence (be it through a website or social networking profiles) increased your visibility/book sales?
The website, since the outset, has ended up being an educational portal where people can talk about how to help animals through my blog and other social media sites. My purpose in writing 2 animal protection books was to raise awareness about helping animals. So even though book sales have not [skyrocketed as a result of] the website, my mission of helping animals has.
For the manifestedharmony.com website, I believe that the website has increased my visibility. Since the website is global and has connected me to people from all over, it has encouraged me to move my practice to more online work (trainings, etc.) rather than in-person work. So the web presence is helping me to grow!
What is your “secret” to achieving this success? Were there any tricks or creative ideas (i.e. a contest) that you used?
I still struggle with marketing and outreach. So it’s just perseverance everyday, posting on social networks and linking back to the websites, keeping people engaged and my two sites front and center. For the coaching/healing website, I started posting free videos which has been a huge success for getting views. I just use my camera to tape the footage and then use the IMovie feature on my Mac to edit them. I’m so not tech-savvy and I was able to figure it out. I think people like to see who we really are and videos are a great way to do that. I don’t think you need to do anything fancy with videos either. Just be yourself, be real. I also respond to every posting (whether on the website blog or social media) to show that people have a connection with me and in an age where we relate better to technology than people, I think that’s a bonus!
Is there anything you would do differently if you were starting over again?
Get more help on marketing. It’s not my forte.
What is the greatest lesson you’ve learned in the process of building your online presence as an author?
The publishers are not helpful at all … it is up to the author to market their books and themselves. I was not prepared for that at all. One of the best moves that I made was getting myself into a professional writing network (the Cat Writer’s Association). I’ve learned so much about writing and publishing just by watching the numerous emails everyday that are posted to the group.
How and where do you promote your website? Is the URL on business cards? Your email signature?
For alliephillips.com, I have business cards and post cards that I place inside books that I sign. I have all of my URL’s in my email signature. For manifestedharmony.com, I have multiple brochures, business cards, flyers. I have the URL’s on all printed materials, on videos, in my email signature.
Final words of wisdom for any new authors wondering how to get started….
Outreach is crucial to being an author or online business person. Creativity will get you noticed, so do not be afraid to be yourself. In fact, it is essential that you portray who you really are and get comfortable with being different. If you are comfortable with videos, I highly recommend posting those on your website. Just realize that the outreach and marketing never ends … it is hand-in-hand with the creativity of being an author.